Generational shift in Congress? - The New Indian Express

Generational shift in Congress?

Published: 11th December 2012 10:02 AM

Last Updated: 11th December 2012 10:03 AM

Announcing that Congress scion Rahul Gandhi will lead the party campaign for the 2014 General elections, spokesperson P C Chacko said that with Rahul’s projection as the party’s lead campaigner and, therefore, the prime ministerial hopeful, the Congress is giving out a message of ‘generational shift’ and ‘change’ in Indian politics.

From Mamata Banerjee in West Bengal, who projected herself as the alternative to the decades-old Left rule, to Mulayam Singh Yadav in Uttar Pradesh, who projected his young son Akhilesh Yadav instead himself, and won handsomely, smaller parties have been cashing in on the message of parivartan (change).

The Congress, it seems, is hoping that it too will be able to fight off the 10-year incumbency factor and the attendant corruption and misgovernance allegations by ushering in its Gen-next with a dash of reforms and direct cash transfers.

“We’re hoping, as a senior Congress leader later quipped, the old ‘whine’ will go away with the new packaging.”

When asked whether Rahul will be acceptable to all UPA allies or whether they, especially NCP heavyweight Sharad Pawar, have been consulted before Rahul’s name is being touted as the coalition’s 2014 mascot, the Congress said, “The rule is such issues are decided by the largest party in the coalition. There has been an overwhelming demand for a bigger role for Rahul Gandhi’s role. Earlier he was reluctant, now he has agreed.”

The Congress, it seems, is also getting set to embrace coalition politics further.

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